It's the story that's taking college athletics by storm and no it's not NIL related. The bombshell news that Oklahoma and Texas plan to leave the Big 12 and join the SEC has been the story to follow all week.
Both schools plan to announce early next week the decision to leave the Big 12, with the hopes of joining the most prestigious conference in college sports. It's going to take a series of long steps to get there but one of the most important is the SEC's willingness to allow the two powerhouse programs into the conference.
According to multiple reports, this has been an ongoing discussion among SEC leaders for the past six months. In order for Texas and Oklahoma to be allowed into the SEC, schools within the conference need a 3/4 vote, or 11 out of 14 in the SEC's case, for it to become official.
Right now there only appears to be one school that's publicly against allowing the two programs, more specificially Texas, into the SEC and that's Texas A&M. The Aggies and Longhorns held a bitter rivalry for over 100 years, meeting 184 times before Texas A&M announced in 2012 it'd be leaving the Big 12 along with Missouri, to join the SEC.
It was the end of an era and one that fans had hoped would return but the two teams haven't played since 2011. One of the main reasons Texas A&M is deadset on not allowing Texas into the SEC is because its unique position as the only Texas team in the SEC.
"We love being the only school in the state of Texas in the SEC," athletic director Ross Bjork said on the Paul Finebaum Show. "We're going to maintain that position, but we're also going to make sure that we're a leader in college athletics and we'll see what the future holds."
The Aggies are coming off a 9-1 season in 2020, just barely missing out on the College Football Playoff. Coach Jimbo Fisher gave a short response when first asked about the possibility of Texas and Oklahoma wanting to join the SEC.
"I bet they would," Fisher said.
The TV deals would likely skyrocket for the conference by adding two of the more well known programs to the SEC so it makes sense from a financial standpoint, especially considering the impact COVID-19 had on college athletics financially.
Because it appears these talks have been rumbling for many months, it seems like this move will happen. What the structure of the SEC looks like is anybody's guess, but we took a stab at it this week. It would be a monumental shift in power and make the SEC a true "superconference" in college athletics.